John Oliver became one of the 2016 presidential election's game-changers last week, despite the fact that he's not running a campaign. For that matter, he's not even American. Oliver dedicated an entire episode of Last Week Tonight to taking down presidential hopeful Donald Trump and dragging his name through the mud — by revealing to viewers that Trump's family name used to be Drumpf. So what country does "Drumpf" come from?
Though information concerning Trump's ancestry has been floating around for years now, it is only since Oliver's "Make Donald Drumpf Again" movement that "Drumpf" has really come into America's households. There's so much more to know, however, than simply the change of a few letters to the family name that was made years ago.
The name actually originates from the land of Oktoberfest and "das" everything. Trump's grandfather, Frederick Drumpf, emigrated from Germany to the United States in 1885, when he was 16 years old. Even after arriving in the country and learning English, Drumpf did a bit of back-and-forth between Germany and the United States, Trump biographer Gwenda Blair told Deutsche Welle in September.
The man returned to his hometown of Kallstadt in southwest Germany in 1902 to marry, and brought his wife to New York. Then Drumpf went back to his first home and attempted to repatriate, although he had become a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1892. But because Drumpf had been in the United States at the time he would have been drafted into the German military, officials accused him of avoiding his military service and deported him. So America it was!
The man went on to amass a fortune by running restaurants and hotels in the United States and Canada. When the surname change from Drumpf to Trump went down is not clear. Drumpf eventually went by the name of Frederick Trump, but there are no records of the restaurateur officially making any change. Blair has claimed that the family actually changed its name centuries earlier, during the Thirty Years' War. Additionally, a U.S. immigration record lists Donald's grandfather's name as Friedr. Trumpf, so the transition appears to have already been taken place at least partway when Frederick moved to the States.
Whatever the path of the surname, the Donald has kept steadfastly to the "Trump" version. That's not too surprising, considering — as Oliver quite enthusiastically pointed out — that "Drumpf" just doesn't have the same connotation of success and confidence that "Trump" does.
Well, maybe that's why Freddy's family changed it all those years ago.